Lone working: the dangers, and tools for coping

Written by Kooth Tuesday 03 May 2022
More people are finding themselves working alone. Lone working affects everyone from farmers to lab operatives, from estate agents to home-workers. Here are some potential impacts and techniques for coping
A block of flats with one lit window where a person is working

As Covid restrictions are gradually lifted around the world, many home-workers are finding themselves spending more time working alone and with less contact with other people.

“Over the summer, my employer downsized the office to just 12 desks, so I now only go in once a week at most,” explains Emily, a content manager in London. “And since the new year, my partner’s manager wants him to travel to their office at least three days each week, meaning I’ve suddenly found myself home alone all day at least twice a week. It’s been disorientating after spending two years 24/7 together during Covid; I’ve been feeling a little down and lost.”

But this is not just a remote working phenomenon. Almost two in ten workers, regardless of where they do their work, still report feeling lonely.

As Mental Health Awareness Week 2022 aims to explore the experience and impact of loneliness, we asked the mental health experts at Kooth to tell us a bit more about the impact of lone working and how you can help yourself and those you manage to cope with isolation.

The experts explain

Lone working – working alone without much contact with colleagues, managers, or members of the public – is involved in many different types of employment: farmers, carers, cleaners, warehouse operatives, plumbers, delivery drivers, lab operatives, and estate agents, to name just a few. 

People also might work alone often if they work unsociable hours, frequently travel for work, run a business alone, or are based in a separate space from their team. Since Covid-19, a much higher proportion of employed people have also been and will continue to work from home, which might mean less contact with others.

Find out more about the dangers of lone working – and techniques for mitigating feelings of isolation


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